By Rev. Dr. Ed Hird
Twenty-nine years ago I first met Lucy Smith. She wrote me a very kind letter about one of my first articles written for the Deep Cove Crier. Most writers can live for two weeks on a single compliment. Over the years, I visited Lucy Smith a number of times, and always been impressed by her good temper and her deep faith. Lucy Smith lived right next door to Maplewood Farms, and right across the street from Maplewood School in North Vancouver, BC.
On Monday March 16th 2009, I had the privilege of sharing my brief reflections about Lucy at her funeral at West Coast Christian Fellowship. The longer I live, the more I appreciate a well-done funeral. Pastor David Bornman, who has known Lucy for many years, weaved Lucy’s life story into a message of hope for others. Pastor Bornman spoke of life after death, commenting that ‘Lucy has just transferred her address.’ One person mentioned the TV Show ‘I Love Lucy’ as an appropriate symbol of how others felt about Lucy Smith.
Lucy was raised on the North Shore in West Vancouver, and later moved to Maplewood where she lived until age 91. Maplewood is a rather hidden part of the Seymour/Deep Cove Community. Lucy was well known as a cat-lover. She was also a member of the Alpine Club of Canada. Remarkably Lucy once trekked to the eighteen-thousand-foot level of Mount Everest.
Much of Lucy’s passion for the outdoors came from her life-long involvement in Girl Guiding. Many Guiding Commissioners attended the funeral, expressing their deep love and appreciation for all that Lucy did for the Guiding movement.
Lucy was also a poet. She loved to write about the beauty of God’s creation. On Feb 5th 1982, Lucy wrote a poem while looking out at the North Shore mountains from the Stanley Park Seawall. Nature brought Lucy closer to God. She wrote: “In those beautiful settings, the Lord seemed very near. My heart responded in a way which only He could hear.”
Lucy worked for many years in the business world, so she was aware of how city life can swallow a person up. She wrote: “How often is that true of us, in one way or another, do we blot out the still small voice and even one another?”
Lucy developed a strong prayer life that kept her from becoming negative or frazzled. She wrote: “Let’s try instead to lean on Him whose arms are always there, to steady us and give us peace, and all our burdens share.” Whenever I visited Lucy, we always ended with a prayer. Many people just let the clergy pray, but Lucy always joined in with her own prayers as well.
The last time that I met Lucy was at Lions Gate Hospital where I was taking the Chapel Communion service. She was such a delight to be with. The love of Jesus beamed from her, even when she was frail. Lucy didn’t fear death, because she believed in the reality of Easter, that Jesus conquered death for our sake. My prayer for those reading this article is that each of us may be as prepared, as Lucy Smith was for the afterlife.
Rev. Dr. Ed Hird, BSW, MDiv, DMin
-an article previously published in the Deep Cove Crier/North Shore News.
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